SaddleBrooke Community Outreach Happenings

SBCO needs your help!

SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) Mission is “To make a positive impact on the lives of needy children in neighboring communities through improved self-respect, better school attendance and higher scholastic achievement.”

SBCO’s story started in the fall of 1996 with six SaddleBrooke women who felt fortunate to be able to live comfortably in our beautiful community. Their discussion evolved as they talked about the plight of children in our neighboring communities, many of them living below the poverty level. They started by collecting used clothing and shoes to donate to these children.

Today, SBCO’s all-volunteer organization has grown so that in 2015 we provided approximately 3,000 wardrobes to needy children identified by school administrators and social services. Additionally, we also provided scholarships, enrichment programs and tutoring through our Education Program. Our annual food program supports the Tri-Communities Food Bank, holiday food baskets, etc.

The SBCO’s Board of Directors is looking for some volunteers who are willing to serve on the Board for the 2016-2017 year. We need volunteers who have some new ideas and to help us celebrate our 20 years of service and more.

The majority of the Board positions are shared so that the work is not overwhelming. We need people for Special Events, Corresponding Secretary, and Communications. A recent study has shown that volunteering is good for your health. It has a positive impact on your physical and mental health and can contribute to a longer life.

If you are interested in donating a few hours a week, please contact Merna Oakley at 825-1420 or [email protected]

AmazonSmile Foundation supports SBCO

Merna Oakley

Do you shop on Amazon.com? Would you like a percentage of your purchase price to help needy youngsters in our area? Then AmazonSmile Foundation is for you!

When you are ready to shop, go to smile.amazon.com. Millions of items are eligible for a 5% donation to SaddleBrooke Community Outreach and are marked eligible on the product detail pages. All your current accounts remain the same, which includes shopping cart, Wish List, registries and other account settings.

AmazonSmile donates the 5% on the purchase price, minus whatever rebates you might have and does not include shipping, handling, gift wrapping fees, taxes or service charges. Because Amazon is making the donation to SBCO you cannot claim it as a tax deduction. Watch for special promotions that might increase the amount you gift to SBCO. Imagine the impact your purchases can have on the lives of our neighboring youngsters!

SBCO College for Kids

SaddleBrooke Community Outreach’s (SBCO) General Meeting on February 8 showcased two of our most successful educational programs: College Scholarships and our College for Kids’ Elementary Science Program done in partnership with Central Arizona College.

Our guest speakers were Dave Jungbluth, Jamie Wolghast and Elissa Craig. Dave is a counselor at Mammoth San Manuel High School talked about what the SBCO college scholarships mean to their students. Dave has worked with the SBCO Education Committee College Scholarships subcommittee for several years and knows his school community very well.

Jamie Wolgast, Director of College for Kids and Elissa Craig from the Central Arizona College, Aravaipa Campus presented a report on last summer’s Desert Critters. This program served 63 elementary students from five rural school districts. The SBCO Education Committee members visit this program each summer to evaluate it and see the wonderful science topics presented and how much the students learn and enjoy the program.

Help make a difference: volunteers needed

Mark your calendars; it’s almost that time again. The annual SaddleBrooke Community Outreach Food Drive will be held on Saturday, March 19, 2016. Last year, through the generosity and support of SaddleBrooke and SaddleBrooke Ranch residents, the drive collected over 19,000 pounds of non-perishable food items along with a very generous number of cash donations. All donations go to the Tri-Communities Food Bank.

It takes the efforts of many people to make this event a success. Over 100 volunteers participated in last year’s drive. If you would like to help in this year’s drive there are many ways to get involved. Unit Captains or Unit Teams are needed to promote the event within their individual units. On the day of the event volunteers are needed to collect donations. Additionally, volunteers may work that morning at MountainView Clubhouse sorting and packing the food. This is an enjoyable way to help support the TriCommunities Food Bank and share a few hours working alongside your neighbors. For more information on any of these volunteer opportunities, please contact Joan or Rich Roberts at 825-7577 or by email at [email protected] A little bit of giving goes a long way!

The Education Committee needs your help

Last year the Education Committee tutors started an experiment using iPad tablets to help fourth and fifth grade students learn math. They found that using the traditional methods, including flash cards to teach multiplication and division in groups of nine or ten students, was not progressing very well. Working with the school administrators and teachers they developed a program where they moved the kids into the library and started using tablets loaded with approved free math programs.

The program included games and competitions. One of the fifth grade classes had an end of the year NCAA basketball type competition. The kids loved this new format and their progress was incredible. Other math skills were also taught using the tablets with the students showing the same level of progress.

With the holiday season over, the Education Committee is hoping that many of you may have received new tablets and you would be willing to donate your used or unwanted iPads, Samsung and Windows tablets that can be used for this program. The tablets must be in good working condition. We are asking that the tablets be erased of all personal information. If you are unable to do this, Mezzabyte, The Computer Store in SaddleBrooke, has generously volunteered to erase the tablets of all personal information before they are loaded with math apps and assigned to the students. The tablets may be dropped off at the SBCO Office in Suite L at the commercial center, Monday through Wednesday, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. If you have any questions, please contact Elise Grimes at 818-3166 or Steve Groth at 333-4262, Education Committee vice presidents.